Robert Murray of MLB Daily Rumors reported it first: Billy Butler has agreed to a three-year, $30 million free agent contract with the Oakland Athletics.
That’s quite a lengthy commitment to a designated hitter whose OPS has been in a freefall over the past three seasons — .882 in 2012, .787 in 2013, and .702 in 2014 — but Butler is only 28 years old and the average annual value of the deal ($10 million) isn’t too bad. Maybe he’ll be able to find new life with the A’s, who excel at exploiting righty-lefty matchups.
Butler is a .314/.393/.519 career hitter against left-handed pitching. He batted .255/.301/.352 versus righties in 2014.
Oakland needed offense. Butler should be able to help that cause, in doses.
As Bill wrote last night, Robinson Canó — bashed for his lack of hustle just a few days ago — busted it out of the box last night and strained his hamstring. That has now landed him on the injured list. Adeiny Hechavarria took over at second base after Cano’s last night and is starting there in today’s game versus the Nationals. No timetable has been given for Canó, but one usually misses at least a couple of weeks with hamstring pulls, sometimes longer.
Also going on the shelf for the Mets is Jeff McNeil, who hurt his hamstring on Tuesday. J.D. Davis will cover for him until he comes back. Michael Conforto is the next regular outfielder who should return to the fold. He has still not been given an offical comeback date after hitting the injured list with a concussion, but it was reported yesterday that he has been symptom free for a few days, which is a good sign.